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IP-based network service ups performance by 200%

CLEAR Communications today launched IP Express, announcing that the innovative IP-based wide area network (WAN) service has increased trial user Compaq New Zealand's system functionality by up to 200 percent.

The new service uses leading edge technology to provide a broadband low cost access platform that enables businesses to easily migrate to high-speed networking.

IP Express is targeted at businesses with more than one branch and IT companies that need high-speed and affordable server connectivity to the Internet. The service will be available in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

Compaq New Zealand migrated its entire national network, which includes the company's Wellington and Christchurch branches and three Auckland sites, to IP Express in September. IP Express is also inter-networked with the existing frame relay services at Compaq's Hamilton branch.

"From Compaq's perspective as a customer, IP Express not only delivers significant performance improvements but at a lower cost than our previous solution. This has got to be more than most customers could ask for. From our perspective as a supplier, Compaq has played an integral part in developing this service. Our unique skills in the CCIE-WAN area have played a key role in the development and implementation of this groundbreaking service," says Compaq's Director of Professional Services Kimbal Riley.

The time it takes to backup data on Compaq's national network has been considerably reduced due to IP Express. In Compaq's Wellington office it now only takes two hours to backup three gigabytes of data, a procedure that previously took 18 hours and 50 minutes.

Furthermore a full system backup can now be completed in under half the time it has formerly taken, cutting the process from 54 hours down to 23 hours.

IP Express has also enabled Compaq to fix an operational problem that it previously had with the backup of laptops, which are widely used by the company's sales force. Now regardless of the office a user is located in they can easily backup laptop content to Compaq's central server quickly and efficiently, something that was not previously possible.

CLEAR's Senior Manager Transport Services Jane Hindle says that IP Express, which is the first offering of its kind in New Zealand, positions CLEAR as the market leader in online services in New Zealand.

"Currently over 50 percent of the traffic moving over CLEAR's network is data," says Hindle. "In the past data transfers like these have been transmitted over existing voice network architecture, resulting in significant time and capacity constraints.

"With IP Express, CLEAR has overcome the 'tyranny of the timeslot', by designing a service that will carry data in its native environment rather than trying to make it fit into a traditional telco voice network."

Instead of Time Division Multiplexed (TDM) architecture, IP Express is a broadband network designed specifically for IP traffic and running Ethernet (10mbps) as its layer two protocol.

"IP Express is competitively priced and will give a broader range of businesses the opportunity to get online with access to high-performance networking that will enhance their business success," said Hindle.

The service revolutionises business networking by extending local area network (LAN) technology across a transparent wide area network (WAN) while maintaining local performance.

"A Compaq Wellington staff member accessing data from the company's central server in Auckland would enjoy LAN type performance, where as prior to IP Express this type of long-distance access was likely to be slow and cumbersome," says Hindle. "The service ultimately creates happy users."

IP Express is a building block that will act as an information and technology enabler for businesses, says Hindle.

"The architecture of IP Express means that its potential application is limited only to the imagination of CLEAR and its customers, who will gain access to a multitude of service enhancements through CLEAR's IP Network," she says.

IP Express will support a number of existing and future CLEAR services, which include telehosting, ASP offerings, Internet access, video conferencing, network encryption, voice over IP, virtual LANs, online IT and data backups.

IP Express is available in a number of packages to meet customers' distinct business needs. The services on offer are called IP Express Circuit, Metro-Link, National-Link, Frame-Link and Direct Net.

The options range from Metro-Link, which gives users a connection interface to the IP Express Network, to Direct Net, which gives customers high-speed access to the Internet in conjunction or isolation with other services. ENDS


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